One always wonders if a wine of this age has anything left to impart. This does. Good high neck fill on the bottle. Lively dark brick color but still nice hues. Leathery, snuff-box, and dried black cherries on the nose unfold in the nose. In the glass and on the palate, whispers of spice like turmeric and black cloves. The fruit is like an aging dowager of faded glory but still a residue of charm left. Finishes surprisingly long. Of some historic interest as it was made before the original family sold the property to a Japanese concern in 1987. In keeping with the wine itself, should be drunk while watching the fading twilight of the day.
In preparation for Open That Bottle Night (live, only on Palate Press; Saturday, February 26 from 7 pm - 10 pm EST), Gary Thomas, Palate Press Wine Review Editor and Editorial Board Member, shares some information on the bottle he plans to open for the event.
A rather fascinating red blend from South Africa. A wine that is fat but racy enough that it doesn’t have to go on a diet. A big nose of smoke, bacon fat, and blackberries. Follows through with vanilla and cumin notes and nice tannic structure on the intrigued taste buds. Like all good shows, ends with a big finish. If there ever was a wine to go with BBQ spareribs, this is it, to my (admittedly subjective) way of thinking.
Here is a elegant and earthy red from Spain’s Catalonian region and the Montsant D.O. Very tight when first opened, with aromas of bittersweet chocolate and black tea. It gives up its secrets slowly and you’ll be rewarded by keeping it in the glass and returning to it. It slowly opens up on the palate with layers of dark blackberries and spice (cumin, for one). This wine would work well with grilled kebabs or even Indian food.
A nice offering from Chile. The name refers to all the vineyards from which the winery has sourced fruit. This one comes from three separate areas alone. Dark, with some hints of licorice, vanilla, and anise on the nose. This has some dark berry flavors but the fruit is not intense . Pleasant, if not overly lingering, finish. Try with grilled pork chops or sausages.
Tasted at a recent show of North American wines, this red blend stood out of the bottled crowd. Deep, opaque purple color shows off a nose of violets and dark chocolate and toast. Chewy and dense at first, it yields languorous blackberry and pepper flavors upheld by soft tannins and a nice sugar balance. A very nice yin and yang of velvet and strength. A great wine with winter dishes, especially a cassoulet. But it’s not just for winter, either. Pricey, but a keeper.
A far better offering than its sister Beaujolais Nouveau wine for nearly the same price. This one has nice hints of strawberry and even cedar on the nose. Diving into it (not literally, of course) yields more tannic backbone holding up bright, lively flavors of cherry jam and a hint of allspice. It finishes with a slightly lingering flourish, which while not memorable, is still pleasant. This one is a nice holiday wine, especially with something like roast duck with cherry sauce.